Tag Archives: Mountains

Mt Sanford

Fall colors on the tundra and alpenglow on the face of Mt Sanford at dawn, Wrangell - St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska.

Fall colors on the tundra and alpenglow on the face of Mt Sanford at dawn, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska. Please click on the image above to view a larger version of the photo.

Hey Folks,

I just returned from a few quick days over in Wrangell – St. Elias National Park before heading off to Katmai for a photo tour. We’re enjoying some of the finest days of the summer, and I wish I could’ve stayed longer, but I must pack and get my gear ready for this trip. It sure is hard to get on the road and take the park “exit” when these mountains are standing tall and strong amid clear blue skies behind you.

It’s been a really great summer, though, and I’ve had a blast. This next 2 weeks in Katmai should be a great finish to a really good summer. Ironically, Anchorage has had one of the dreariest, and wettest, summers on record, while I’ve had some great weather, amid the fog, rain and snow. All good fun, though, eh?

Mount Sanford rocks.

Cheers

Carl

More photos of Mt Sanford.

Mt. Jarvis, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park

Dawn rises over Mount Jarvis, alpenglow lighting the mountain and it's reflection. Fall, Mt. Jarvis, Wrangell - St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska.

Dawn rises over Mount Jarvis, alpenglow lighting the mountain and it’s reflection. Fall, Mt. Jarvis, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska. To view a larger version of the photo, please click on the thumbnail.

Hey Folks

Mt Jarvis, in all it’s 13 421′ glory.

A recent trek up around the Mt Jarvis area yielded some amazing scenery and fantastic views. I hadn’t been to the area before, and will definitely be heading back next year. To camp within a few hundred yards of this mountain face is a treat indeed. We were pretty lucky, for sure, considering we were camped at about 7200′ in the Wrangell Mountains in September!

We had a real mix of weather, from snow storms and rain to gorgeous sunny days; which I’ll take gladly. The trek was a lot of fun, with a great couple from Chicago, Brad and Tracey. I appreciated their flexibility and easy going nature, which allowed me to sneak out a morning or 2 and grab some photos. Tracey joined me once or twice, and both Brad and Tracey got up early on our final morning to make a a mad dash out the Nabesna Rd in the hopes of snaring some nice alpenglow on Mt Sanford. Much appreciated, Tracey and Brad. What a gorgeous morning that turned out to be.

This is a quick one folks – the weather forecast here this week is too promising to spend in town, so I’ll be heading back out on Monday for a couple of days to hopefully get some more fall color and nice light on the big mountains. Be back later for a day or 2, then heading to Katmai to photograph the great grizzly bears. Then it’s October.

Cheers

Carl

Cross country skiing photo – Wrangell St. Elias.

Backcountry cross country skiing (XC skiing), Wrangell - St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska.

Backcountry cross country skiing (XC skiing), Wrangell – St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska. Please click the image to view a larger version of the photo.

Hey folks,

In honor of my ambitious plan to go skiing tomorrow, tuesday, I thought I’d post this scene from last spring – cross country skiing in Wrangell St. Elias National Park. It seemed like every day for the entire month of April was like this last year, and this is pretty much how I spent each morning – gliding over a nice crust of snow, surrounded by snow-covered mountain ranges, wide open spaces, blue skies and wildness.

I’m enjoying my time in Anchorage this year, but am OH SO wishing I were over in Wrangell – St. Elias National Park again. There is no place quite like it. Continue reading

More from the St. Elias mountains and the movie Mount St. Elias

Vertical frame of a steep wall of the St. Elias mountain Range, Wrangell - St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska.

Fluting and deep power on the St. Elias mountains. Wrangell – St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska. Click on the image for a larger version.

Hey Folks,

As promised, more photos from the St. Elias mountains. An aerial I shot on one of the most gorgeous days I’ve ever been out shooting. On the subject of the newly released film, Mount St. Elias:

Few people realize just how special these mountains are. Everyone knows Denali, of course, and the Himalayas, but the St. Elias mountains just don’t seem to have caught the public eye like these others. I suspect it’s because they’re full of  “seconds”: 2nd highest mountain in the US (Mount. St. Elias, second highest mountain Canada (Mount St. Elias, also known as Boundary Peak 186, sits on the US/Canada border), 2nd highest mountain in North America (Mt. Logan in Canada is in the St. Elias range). We’re a culture of competition, and there really ain’t no second prize. Continue reading

Mount St. Elias – the Film

Aerial view of a mountain in the St. Elias Mountain Range, Wrangell - St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska.

Looking down from a great height at some of the amazing escarpments in the St. Elias Mountain Range, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska. Click on the image to see a larger version.

Hey Folks,

Have you ever thought about climbing the 2nd highest mountain in the US, the 2nd highest mountain in Canada, the 3rd highest mountain in North America, the mountain with the greatest vertical relief of any mountain in the world so you can ski from top to bottom? From 18 008′ to the sea? If so, this movie’s for you. Mount St. Elias. 2 Austrian mountaineers and an American freeski mountaineer set out to run the “ultimate vertical descent” – 18 000 of skiing from the summit of Mount St. Elias to the sea, to Icy Bay. Pretty amazing stuff to watch, I can’t begin to imagine what that kind of endeavor must be like.

“If you want to achieve something great, you have to risk more than usual – that’s the way it is.” — (Axel Naglich) Continue reading

Denali, Mt. McKinley, Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska.

Denali, or Mt McKinley, and reflection in a small tundra pond, Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska.

Early morning photo of Denali, Or Mt. McKinley, and reflection in a small tundra pond, Denali National Park, Alaska. Click on the thumbnail for a larger image.

Hey Folks,

A few years ago I spent a glorious week in Denali National Park and Preserve, camped out in the backcountry at one of my favorite spots to hang – a high ridge to the north of Denali, or Mt. McKinley as it’s officially known (see this post for a discussion concerning the name of the mountain). After too many years and way too many footsteps across the tundra, I finally happened to be in the right place at the right time. Previous trips had me wet, cold, hungry, and wondering where this infamous mountain actually was (hidden, veiled behind the infernal clouds). This one was gloriously different.

So just how much do I like this little spot? Well, in 2007 I took my mum and dad to Denali National Park and Preserve on their trip to Alaska and force-marched them up over the hills and across the tundra to this pond one afternoon. It’s a pretty spot to sit on the tundra, have some lunch, look for wildlife (we saw caribou) and soak up the mountain’s grandeur. They had a grand time. Continue reading

Mt Churchill and Mt. Bona, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park.

Tallest peaks in the University Range, Mt. Churchill and Mt. Bona rise dramatically from Russell Glacier, catching the last rays of the day, Fall colors in the foreground, Wrangell - St. Elias National Park, Alaska.

Tallest peaks in the University Range, Mt. Churchill and Mt. Bona rise dramatically from Russell Glacier, catching the last rays of the day, Fall colors in the foreground, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park, Alaska.

Hey Folks,

Here’s an image that I am amazingly lucky to have made. Probably luckier than I deserve to be. Not because of the luck involved in catching this scene like this; this image has been a long, long time in coming. The scene is taken from the south end of Chitistone Pass, near Skolai Pass, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park, Alaska. I’ve spent more time here than I probably should admit to, waiting, hoping and wondering if I’d ever actually happen to catch it in the light that I knew graces these peaks from time to time. Finally, this September, I was up there with our phototour and we were really blessed with some great weather. I was giddy with excitement and I’m sure the folks along on the trip were wondering just what they’d got themselves into. Within 20 minutes of landing we’d already found and photographed a Least Weasel, which I’d never had the opportunity to photograph inside the park previously. Next up we ran into some Woodland caribou, apparently the only woodland caribou herd in Alaska, so that was pretty awesome. Then we saw some Dall sheep rams, and managed to stalk up on them a little. Next up was sunset, Continue reading

Simpson Hill Overlook and the Copper River

Wrangell Mountains, Sanford, Drum, Zanetti and Wrangell, spring, Copper River, Wrangell St. Elias National Park, Alaska.

Hey Folks,

Here’s a photo I took last spring, just at start of the season Alaskans call “breakup”. This photo is taken from the roadside overlook just south of Glennallen, at Simpson Hill. Simpson Hill is rapidly disappearing, as the Copper River (in the foreground) erodes and cuts away at its base. Soon enough the spot may be known as “Simpson Mound”. This is probably one of the very few (maybe 2) iconic viewspots for Wrangell – St. Elias National Park, the largest (and way coolest) National Park in the US. There are certainly many other grand views to be had, and amazing sites, but few that are so frequently photographed from.

The mountains, viewed from this spot, are simply awesome. From left to right, the mountains are Continue reading

Name That Mountain: = Mt. Logan, Canada.

Mount Logan, Canada.

Hey Folks,

Here’s another in the long line of ‘Name That Mountain’ posts. I’ll give you a hint; it’s huge. Really, really, really big. Bigger than Mt. Blackburn. Bigger than Mt Foraker. Bigger than Mt St. Elias. Quite a massif. The mountain is NOT in Wrangell – St. Elias National Park, but the photo was taken from inside Wrangell – St. Elias National Park.

I’ll be gone as of today (friday, the 18th), and will be back in October. I’ll post more about that trip later .. check back in a week or so for a scheduled post that’s a mustelid .. way cool.

After that, well, we’ll see what the next 2 weeks brings.

Cheers

Carl

Caribou, Skolai Pass and the University Range, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park

Woodland Caribou herd, Skolai Pass, the University Range in the background, Wrangell - St. Elias National Park, Alaska.

Hey Folks,

Here’s another image from my recent trip to Skolai Pass. This, along with the previous image posted of Mt. Bona and Mt Churchill, was taken on the first day of our arrival in the pass. Pretty nice day, eh?

These caribou are part of the Chisana Herd (pronounced ‘Chushana’) and are, according to legend, the only Woodland Caribou herd in Alaska, and maybe ought be listed on the Endangered Species Act, possibly the strongest environmental legislation in the US. Woodland Caribou are found mostly in Canada (possibly a very small population in Idaho and Washington – often referred to as a separate subspecies, Mountain Caribou), with the great herds of Alaskan caribou, such as the Porcupine Herd, or Central Arctic Herd of the north slope, like the caribou more seen in Denali National Park, being Barren Ground Caribou. Continue reading